My friend.

This morning I ran into a lovely older gentlemen at Starbucks. He had just finished chatting with an 85 year old man who wanted to talk.

“Allie! Get up off that dirty floor!”

“Allie! Please don’t grab those breakable coffee mugs!”

“Aww you’re taking all the fun out of it, mom,” he said.

I laughed.

“That’s what grandparents are for.”

Clearly he was one. We chatted while we waited for our lattes. We talked current events, taxes, and careers. All in about 5 minutes. It’s funny how talking to a stranger can be so easy sometimes.

It was in that moment I realized I was lucky to have such a lovely person to talk to like that–my dad.

Grandpa, dad, confidante, motivator. He’s the one I turn to and he’s the one who’s there.  In the midst of all the bad when I was at my lowest and fighting to get better, he listened from 600 miles away. I can only imagine how hard it was.  We went to Disney World as a family, even my brother, and it’s one of the things I love the most. I hate that I was so caught up in the marathon that me, of all people, I forgot to take more pics.  I’m bummed I don’t have one pic of us as a family there.  We haven’t taken a vacation together since I was a few months pregnant with Ava and I’d just taken the bar exam (2005).  I can’t wait to do another family trip some day.

When my mom was sick, when she was dying, he was there. They weren’t married any more, but he was there.  For her, for us.  He put everything aside to be there for all of us when we needed it.  I am eternally grateful that I wasn’t alone to plan.  To do. To go to her house alone after she was gone. Those are things a dad does, even when he doesn’t have to.

It’s funny how looking back on things all I can think is, gah what a little brat I was when I was younger! All the frustrations you have as a teen know it all.

And now he’s more than a dad. He’s a friend. And I’m thankful everyday for that.

Thanks, dad.

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